Does the idea of “Mentor Pods” intrigue you? Looking for best practices for integrating water conservation into your purchasing policies? Want to know how a “Locavore Foodometer” can be part of your meeting planning process? These and 13 other ideas are part of an innovative fundraising effort by the Green Meeting Industry Council Foundation.

From May 8–11, the Foundation is running an online Idea Auction, a concept dreamed up by Mariela McIlwraith, CMP, CMM, president of Meeting Change and a GMIC Foundation trustee, to raise funds that will support sustainable meetings education and raise awareness of best practices.

“One of the great things about GMIC is its willingness to try something new,” notes McIlwraith. “We see such great ideas and innovation in all of our live and virtual events, and we wanted to find a way to be able to leverage this in building the Foundation. It was important to us to find a way to incorporate intellectual capital donations alongside financial capital donations.”

Phase one of the Idea Auction was held during the GMIC conference in late April. Attendees winnowed down a large volume of sustainable meetings ideas using a Twitter–based voting system. Four ideas in each of four categories—People, Planet, Profit, and Wild Card—are being featured in the online fundraiser in which people can buy a complete description of how to implement the idea.

The term auction is somewhat of a misnomer. The ideas in the Idea Auction can be purchased by multiple buyers, with set rates depending on the size of the buyer’s organization. There will be special rates for students. People will have the opportunity to buy all the ideas as a PDF booklet, or they can purchase the top ideas in each category individually. The Idea Auction is open to anyone and will begin at 1 p.m. EDT on Tuesday, May 8 at